On November 8, the kick-off meeting of the Geoscience and Health Cohort Consortium (GECCO) took place at Amsterdam UMC, location VUmc. GECCO is supported by a NWO investment grant and will enrich individual-level data from 20 renowned and on-going large-scale Dutch cohort studies with environmental data. GECCO builds on initial efforts to enrich six cohort studies of the VUmc and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
During the kick-off meeting, GECCO-coordinator dr. Jeroen Lakerveld (Epidemiology and Biostatistics, VUmc), dr. Erik Timmermans (Epidemiology and Biostatistics, VUmc) and Ellen Generaal (Psychiatry, VUmc/GGZ inGeest) presented previous GECCO work and opportunities for epidemiological studies that include data of the environment. Furthermore, the outline of the project and future plans were discussed with representatives of all participating cohort studies. Next to enriching cohort data, GECCO will also provide a wide variety of workable exposure variables via a web-portal for researchers to link it with their own data. A bit further in the project GECCO will organize workshops and develop tutorials to ensure the use of GECCO data.
In short, GECCO will enable all APH researchers to address a wide variety of research questions on environmental determinants of lifestyle behaviours and health. More information? A dedicated website will be launched soon.